It is not an uncommonly held belief that nearly all of the skin protection barrier creams that sit on the shop shelf nowadays are made from similar ingredients and possess similar properties.
There is nothing that could be more mistaken.
That different barrier cream products target different skin conditions is almost inevitable.
Skin moisturisers – see http://www.dermashield.co.uk – vary greatly from product to product, and for very good reason It is simply not possible to create a moisturising cream that all skin circumstances and types respond to equally. There is simply not a “one size fits all” solution when it comes to skin care.
Every person is unique with unique circumstances. What may be best suited for one person will almost certainly not be the most appropriate for someone else with a different background or genetic makeup.
Also, each one of us has our particular set of circumstances. Feeling chapped or sore on the hands – further info – is just one frequent skin ailment.
Working surrounds and circumstances will differ for each individual. One person working in an industrial factory with dusty, humid air will have vastly different skin moisturising needs in comparison to another person who sees most of their work daytime surrounded by plants in the great outdoors.
Even the varying seasons that naturally cycles from spring to summer and then from autumn to winter will effect the efficacy of different moisturising products. A moisturiser that is appropriate for the Spring or Summer is probably not the most effective moisturising barrier cream to use during the harsh winter months.
When looking to buy a moisturising barrier cream you you need to be aware that they are broadly separated into 3 groupings. Namely, creams, lotions and the more innovative mousse. So what are the characteristics of these three main groupings?
Creams are dominated by their main ingredient, which is petroleum jelly.
The discoverer of the beneficial properties of petroleum jelly – or, as most people know it, Vaseline – is the unwanted waste of the oil industry. The origins literally spring from an unwanted by-product, rod wax, that congeals around the top of the pump rods in 19th century United States oil wells. This rod wax takes the leading role of a barrier cream that was first marketed by British chemist Robert Chesebrough in 1872. The name Vaseline was adopted because, in the course of his experimentation with rod wax, Robert Chesebrough stored each test formulations in common household vases. Hence, “vase – line” – “elaion” being Greek for oil.
This petroleum jelly is responsible for making most creams thick and greasy. Whilst bestowing upon your skin a substantial protective layer, creams are generally thought to be inconvenient when manual dexterity is important as they leave your hands slippery. Heavy, thick moisturising barrier creams can have the unhelpful side-effect of blocking the pores or your skin. These properties make the use of thick moisturising creams problematical on areas of skin that displays symptoms of acne. Heavy barrier creams used on the hands can also be problematic if your job calls for the wearing of gloves for extended lengths of time.
Heavy consistency moisturising barrier creams are usually thought to be more suited to wintertime use when dry skin can be the chief concern.
In contrast, lotions use very little petroleum jelly, or none at all, in their ingredients. This gives lotions a consistency that is lighter and easier to smooth over your skin. Leaving aside water, or aqua as it is often listed as, their chief constituents will commonly be an oil such as Olive oil or the oil of the Sunflower. Indeed, recordings detailing Olive oil as a substance used in the realms of skin care dates back more than 5,000 years. It was certainly employed by the ancient Egyptians, Greeks and Romans for various purposes.
However, after smoothing over skin lotions to a region of your body, a stickiness often persists. The high oil ingredient also gives some people with a “less than clean” feeling. The relatively high oil content can also be a problem for people already blessed with a naturally oily skin.
Mousse-based products are a relatively new development in the area of skin moisturisers. Many believe that mousse products will eventually supersede traditional creams and lotions. Certainly, a mousse product will be naturally very light and easy to apply. A mouse formulation will also spread much easier and evenly over your skin. For this reason, a smaller quantity is needed per application. This will allow your epidermis to breathe and perspire normally. People with dry skin, or skin that is sore or chapped may also find that a mousse is less painful to apply as it does not need vigorous rubbing in.
However, most mousses are aerosol based which has traditionally been associated with ozone destroying CFC chemicals – although this is no longer the case. Further, aerosols usually employ Butane as a delivery agent and this has been connected to the issue of teenage substance abuse.
Mousse moisturising formulations have been found to be suitable for all year use.
Whatever your choice of moisturiser, do not forget to apply it regularly and consistently. Your skin is yours for life, look after it and it will serve you well.